The Increasing Mount Mutis

The Increasing Mount Mutis

Image source:, South Central Timor: East Nusatenggara Province has tourist attractions and nature reserves rich in flora and fauna. For example, Mount Mutis with an altitude of 2,427 meters in South Central Timor District. Although less known, this nature reserve area has the largest ampupu forest or Eucalyptus Urophylla in Indonesia, which is about 30 thousand hectares. Ampupu besides functioning as a reforestation plant, it is also used for raw materials of pulp and paper industry. Unfortunately the widening population is predicted to potentially damage the existence of the nature reserve.

NTT World Wide Fund for Nature Coordinator Achmad Pua Too, recently said the damage to the forests of Mount Mutis is because people are carelessly cutting down trees. As a result, trees are getting "smothered" and feared to be prone to fire. Demikin conditions of course interfere with the life of livestock such as cattle and horses that naturally breed in the region. Later, WWF concluded thousands of cattle had slightly disrupted the growth of Ampupu. It is seen from the number of standing ampupu that never increases.

NTT Regional Forestry Unit Head I Dadang Wardhana added that residents who often move from one place to another also cause. Therefore, the land has been cultivated will be abandoned by the population. "Forest exploitation is widespread and the danger of erosion will threaten the soil," Dadang said. Especially the marble hills that surround the nature reserve. Because investors are interested in investing to mine marble. "It has been since 1999," he said.

Community leaders NTT F.H. Phobia agrees with Dada's story. According to Phobia, mining activities conducted by five local and foreign companies had offended the feelings of the people of NTT. "The ecosystem of Timor Island is in danger of being severely damaged, a serious threat," Phobia said.

To that end, WWF NTT together with a number of relevant agencies to create intensification programs for livestock and agriculture. Achmad explains, currently they are proposing to the NTT government to change the status of Mount Mutis from nature reserves into national parks. That way, WWF can fix the errors of the arrangement of the area. For example by determining the correction zone according to the function of the region without having to expel the local population. (KEN / Syaiful Halim)

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